The Hudson Bay low pressure system of November 23, 2005

What happened

On November 22/23, 2005, a low pressure system spun up rapidly over northern Hudson Bay, north of Coral Harbour, NU. It made landfall about a day later east of Churchill, MB. As it was making landfall it produced high winds and blizzard conditions.

There is debate as to whether this system was a polar low. The evidence for it includes the incidence of plenty of convection (due to the warmth of the Bay and -45°C temperatures at 500 mb). The evidence against it includes the sheer size of the storm--polar lows are theoretically not supposed to be this large.

There is a NorLat meteorological training module on polar lows here, so like those old football games, you make the call.

The satellite imagery and morning upper air analyses from this event are presented here, as well as the adverse conditions reported at Churchill.

Satellite images

500 mb charts

Click here to see the 500 mb charts from the event

Churchill obs

Click here to see the obs from CYYQ

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Last update to this page: November 24, 2005